Maintaining motivation whilst exercising can be a difficult task. Life can present a number of obstacles for you to overcome and the arrival of winter only adds reasons to not exercise. To help you stay motivated, this week’s blog gives you five things you can do to remain focused and achieve your goals. I hope the tips are useful.
- Set a goal
The most common, and most important, way to stay motivated when times get tough is to have a specific fitness goal. This goal could be anything such as losing a specific amount of body fat, being able to lift a certain weight or training for a particular event. This is important for a number of reasons. Training for an event, no matter how large or small, requires you to reach a certain level of fitness to complete the task. With the goal in mind, each training session becomes focused on reaching that fitness level prohibiting you from training aimlessly. Not only this, by being required to reach a certain level of capability, you will constantly improve and better yourself.
- Train with a friend
Friendly competition and encouragement can both play a huge role in helping you achieve a new personal best and making training fun. We’ve all experienced times when we haven’t felt keen to complete a particular task but been spurred into action with encouraging words from a friend. Training is no different. Sometimes those words of inspiration can be all we need to act and get to the gym. For you to strengthen the motivational impact of a friend, why not set a goal to which both of you can aspire?
- Schedule time to train and, if possible, train early
One of the most common reasons people neglect to train is because of a perceived lack of time. With work, family, and a number of other things that get in the way, it’s all too easy for exercise to become a low priority. When busy, however, exercise becomes even more important. Why? Exercise can provide time away from your current situation to relax and switch focus. This does wonders for your psychological state because it refreshes you and allows you to return to the situation with a fresh perspective. One of the best ways to ensure you actually train is to train early. Training at 6 a.m. for example, kick starts your day, boosts your metabolism, and gives you a great feeling later in the day knowing you have already exercised. If this isn’t possible (or you would rather have a lie-in) scheduling in time to train (and sticking to it) is equally as effective as life will work itself around your schedule and provide you with the time you need.
- Find a sport or exercise you enjoy
This point is very simple, but one that is often overlooked. Training and improving one’s health do require a degree of exertion, but that doesn’t mean it has to be hard work. If you find a style of training or sport you enjoy, you will look forward to and take pleasure in training. This can make all the difference when you’re faced with moments of indecision.
- Keep a log
One beneficial action we’ve mentioned in a previous blog is the act of keeping a workout diary or log. There’s no need for an expensive book or journal. A notepad or phone will suffice and for a small amount of money (assuming you don’t buy a phone for this exercise) you can have a huge return on your investment. Logging your workouts will do two things. The first is keeping track of what you achieved in your last session. This easily enables you to work that little bit harder and, over time, make more progress than repeating the same workout. The second benefit of keeping a workout log is that you can see your progress in black and white. As improvements can take time to arrive, or not be noticed because we see ourselves every day, to be able to pick up a book and read that you can now lift and extra amount or complete an activity in less time.
At times, finding motivation can be difficult. However, we hope that by providing you with these pieces of advice, you will meet every goal and attend every training session.